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This Book "Priestley's Navigable Rivers and Canals" by Joseph Priestley was previously published in April 1831. NOTE: Oringinally called "Historical Account of the Navigable Rivers, Canals, and Railways, of Great Britain". For more information see About this Book
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34 George III. Cap. 92, Royal Assent 9th May, 1794.
THIS canal commences in the Nene River, at Wisbech, in the county of Cambridge, and after running a short course of about six miles in a south-easterly direction, it terminates in the Old River at Outwell, at the commencement of Well Creek, which connects it with the River Ouse at Salter's Load Sluice.
The act of parliament authorizing this canal, is entitled, 'An Act for making and maintaining a navigable Canal from Wisbech River, at or near a Place called the Old Sluice, in the town of Wisbech, in the Isle of Ely, and county of Cambridge, to join the River Nene, in the parish of Outwell, in the said Isle of Ely, and in the county of Norfolk, and for improving and maintaining the Navigation of the said River from Outwell Church to Salter's Load Sluice.' It incorporates the subscribers by the name of " The Wisbech Canal Company ;" empowers them to raise amongst themselves, for the purposes of the act, the sum of £14,000, in shares of £105 each, and, if necessary, a further sum of £6,000, and to take the following
|For every Chaldron of Coal, Lime, Hundred of Battens, Half Hundred of Single Deals, Quarter of Hundred of Double Deals, Load of Fir Timber, Four Packs of Wool, Five Quarters of Oats, Load of Turf, Reed, Sedge, Hay, Flax or Hemp, Five Hundred Pantiles, One Thousand Flat Tiles, Five Hundred Bricks, Twenty Cubic Feet of Stone, Pipe, Butt, Puncheon or Tierce of Wine or Spirituous Liquors, Six Sacks of Flour, Five Barrels of Ale, Beer and Porter||1s 0d.|
|For every Five Quarters of Wheat, Barley, Mustard.seed, Hemp-seed, Rape-seed, Line-seed, Rye, Peas or Beans||1s 6d.|
|For all other Goods||1s 0d per Ton.|
Materials for the Bedford Level or for Roads, to be exempted from Rates.
Goods lying on a Wharf more than Twenty-four Hours, to pay such Rate as may be agreed on.
For Cranage of every Ton of Goods (except Coal) Sixpence.
All Goods passing into or out of this Canal to the Nene River to pay Three-pence per Ton; out of the Produce of which the Commissioners of the Nene Navigation are to have One Hundred Pounds per Annum, and the remainder is to be applied in the Repair and Improvement of Well Creek.
This canal is very little higher than the sea, being embanked through the level fens; there are flood locks at its extremities. It forms a ready connection between the Nene and the Ouse, by which the intercourse between the counties of Lincoln, Cambridge, Norfolk and Suffolk, is rendered more complete and easy.
10 George IV. Cap. 107, Royal Assent 1st June, 1829.
THE Wishaw and Coitness Railway is designed to pass from the collieries of Chapel and Crawfoot, in the parish of Cambusnethan, in the county of Lanark, through Daiziel, Hamilton, Bothwell, Coltness, Overtown, Wishawtown, Motherwell, Burnhouse and Carnbroe, to join the Monkland and Kirkintilloch Railway at Old Monkland; with a branch to Rosehall; a second to the collieries of Stevenson, Carfin and Cleland; and a third from these last places to Law, in the parish of Carluke, in the same county of Lanark.
The act for this work was obtained in 1829, under the designation of 'An Act for making a Railway from Chapel, in the parish of Cambusnethan, in the county of Lanark, by Coltness and Gariongill, to join the Monkland and Kirkintilloch Railway, where the same passes through the Lands of Coats or Garturk, in the parish of Old Monkland and county of Lanark.'
By this act the proprietors are incorporated as "The Wishaw and Coltness Railway Company," with the usual powers for constructing the same, and for raising £60,000 for the purposes thereof, in shares of £50 each; and in case the said sum shall be found insufficient for the completion of the works, then they are empowered to borrow, on mortgage of the property and rates, a further sum of £20,000. For defraying contingent expenses and paying back the capital subscribed, they are empowered to demand the following
|For all Lime-stone, Dung, Compost, Manure and Materials for Roads||0s 2d per Ton, per Mile.|
|For all Coke, Coal, Kennel or Gas Coal, Culm, Charcoal, Cinders, Stone, Sand, Bricks, Slates, Lime, Earth, Iron, Lead and other Metals or Minerals Unmanufactured||0s 3d ditto. ditto.|
|For all Timber, Corn, Flour, Goods, Lead in Sheets and all other Wares, Merchandize, Matters or Things||0s 4d ditto. ditto.|
|For the use of any Waggon, Machinery, Engine or Power belonging the Company, and for all Articles, to pay a Tonnage as hereinafter expressed, passing the Inclined Planes on this Railway, in addition to the Rates||1s 0d ditto.|
Fractions of a Ton to pay for the Hundred Weights therein, and of a Hundred Weight as a Hundred Weight; of a Mile as the Quarters therein, and of a Quarter as a Quarter.
Proportional Charges are also to be made on Coals, Goods or other Articles, according to the Distances conveyed on the Railway.
The company may provide carriages for the conveyance of passengers, and charge for each person so conveyed a rate of 4d. per mile; or they may license carriages for the same purpose, subject to the payment of an annual rent to be agreed upon between the company and the owners thereof. Locomotive engines may be used on the railway, and steam engines may be erected for the inclined planes.
Owners of land may erect wharfs, warehouses and cranes on the line, and if they refuse the company may do so, charging for the use thereof the following
|For all Coal, Culm, Lime, Lime-stone, Clay, Iron .stone, Stone, Bricks, Gravel, Hay, Straw, Corn in the Straw or Manure, for Six Months||½d per Ton.|
|For every Month after||¼d ditto.|
|For all Iron, Lead or other Ore, Tin, Timber, Tiles and Slates, for Six Months||1d ditto.|
|For every Month after||½d ditto.|
|For all other Goods, Wares, &c. for Six Months||2d ditto.|
|For every Month after||1d ditto.|
If the work is not finished in five years, then the powers of this act are to cease.
22 & 23 Char. II. C. 25, R. A. 22nd April, 1671.
2 Geo. III. C. 32, R. A. 2nd June, 1762.
48 Geo. III. C. 108, R. A. 18th June, 1808.
52 Geo. III. C. 108, R. A. 20th May, 1812.
7 Geo. IV. C. 2, R. A. 22nd Mar. 1826.
10 Geo. IV. C. 123, R. A. 4th June, 1829.
THIS river has its source on the confines of Rutlandshire, whence it runs northwardly by Grantham to the city of Lincoln, where, at its junction with the Fossdike Navigation, it becomes navigable. Hence its course is south-easterly by the town of Tattershall, where the Horncastle Navigation effects a junction with it; and three miles further south it is joined by the Sleaford Canal; it then passes through the fens by the town of Boston, five miles below which place it empties itself into The Wash. The length of navigation is about thirty-eight miles, viz, from the city of Lincoln to the Horncastle Navigation, nineteen miles; thence to the Sleaford Canal, three miles; thence to Boston eleven miles; and to the sea a further distance of five miles.
Although the first act of parliament relating to this navigation was passed in the 22nd and 23rd Charles II. A. D. 1671, yet we learn from the preamble that this river had long been used as a navigation. The preamble runs thus- "Whereas there hath been for some hundred of yeares a good navigacion betwixt the burrough of Boston and the river of Trent by and through the citty of Lincolne, and thereby a great trade mannaged to the benefitt of those parts of Lincolneshire, and some parts of Nottinghamshire, and Yorkshire, which afforded an honest employment and livelyhood to great numbers of people. But at present the said navigacion is much obstructed and in great decay by reason that the rivers or auntient channells of Witham and Fosdyke, which runn betwixt Boston and Trent are much silted and landed up and thereby not passable with boats and lyters as formerly, to the great decay of the trade and intercourse of the said citty and all market and other towns neare any of the said rivers, which hath producet in them much poverty and depopulation. For remedy whereof and for improvement of the said navigacion, may it please your most excellent Majestie that it may bee enacted, &c."
It has been thought that the Witham, previous to the Norman Conquest, was a tideway navigation for ships to Lincoln; and that it was navigable at a very early period, may be inferred from the circumstance that the Fossdike Canal, 'an ancient Roman Work,' was scoured out by Henry I. in the year 1121, for the purpose of opening a navigable communication between the Trent and the Witham at the city of Lincoln, so that that place, which was then in a very flourishing state and enjoying an extensive Foreign trade, might reap all the advantages of a more ready communication with the interior.
The precise period at which the channel of the Witham ceased to be useful for navigation purposes is uncertain; but we learn that in the 9th of Edward III. a commission issued, directed to Adam de Lymberg, Geffery de Edenham, and others, to enquire into the state of the navigation, &c. who effected some improvements. In the 39th of the same reign, parliament was petitioned by the merchants and tradesmen of Lincoln, complaining of the total insufficiency of the navigation. Up to the 49th of
Edward III. the navigation appears to have been supported by a drainage rate; but in Michaelmas Term of this year, a presentment to the Court of King's Bench, having for its object the imposing of this burthen for ever on the owners of the adjacent lands, was unsuccessful, and it was then abandoned. Other commissions have, from time to time, been issued for improving the river; one in the 8th of Richard II. directed to John Duke of Lancaster, and others of the nobility; but it does not appear that much was done betwixt this period and the passing of the act of 23rd Charles II. entitled, 'An Act for improveing the Navigacion betweene the towne of Boston and the River Trent;' and by which act, the necessary powers were granted to the Mayor and Corporation of Lincoln, who were authorized, for this purpose, to receive certain tolls upon the Witham and Fossdike, but restrained from laying out monies derived from the navigation of the Fossdike on the improvement of the Witham, and vice versa. Notwithstanding this act, the corporation confined their operations to the restoring of the Fossdike only.
The act of the 2nd George III. is entitled, 'An Act for draining and preserving certain Low Lands called The Fens, lying on both sides of the River Witham, in the county of Lincoln; and for restoring and maintaining the Navigation of the said River, from the High Bridge, in the city of Lincoln, through the borough of Boston, to the Sea;' in the preamble of which act it is stated, that by the sand and silt brought in by the tide, the outfal to the sea had for many years last past been greatly obstructed, and that the navigation had in consequence been lost, or nearly so. The act appointed commissioners for the purpose of carrying its provisions into execution; and for defraying the necessary expenses of the navigation, they were empowered to collect, for every description of goods, wares, merchandize, or other commodities, passing up or down the river, the sum of 1s. 6d. per ton.
In 1808 another act was obtained, entitled, 'An Act for rendering more effectual an Act of his present Majesty, for draining certain Low Lands lying on both sides of the River Witham, in the county of Lincoln; and for restoring the Navigation of the said River, from the High Bridge, in the city of Lincoln, to the Sea,' by which the commissioners are authorized to build a lock
in the parish of Washingborough, 80 feet long and 16 feet 6 inches in width, and to remove the locks at Barlings Kirkstend and Stamp End, and to do other works, with the double object of improving the navigation and effecting a better drainage for the extensive fens which border on the Witham. The former tonnage being repealed by this act, the following were granted.
|For all Goods, Wares, Merchandise or Commodities, carried or conveyed from any Place within One Mile of Lincoln High Bridge, to within the like Distance of the Grand Sluice near to Boston, or from any Place within One Mile of the said Grand Sluice to within the like Distance of Lincoln High Bridge||3s 0d per Ton.|
|For any Distance upon the said Navigation, not exceeding Twelve Miles, as and for a Gross Tonnage thereon||1s 6d ditto.|
|For all Goods, Wares, Merchandise or Commodities carried or conveyed any greaterDistance than Twelve Miles upon the said Navigation, and not being subject to the payment of Three Shillings per Ton||0s 1½d ditto, per Mile.|
Fractions an for a Quarter of a Ton and Quarter of a Mile.
All Goods, Wares, Merchandise and Commodities on which a Toll or Duty shall become due or payable under the Authority of this Act shall, for the Purpose of ascertaining such Toll or Duty, be estimated and taken to be of the several Weights following, and be paid for accordingly.
All other Goode, Wares, Merchandise and Commodities, to be estimated and paid for after the Rate of Two Thousand Tw0 Hundred and Forty Pounds per Ton.
No Toll or Duty shall be paid, taken, or demanded, for any Goods, Wares, Merchandize or Commodities, carried or conveyed from Brayford Meer through the High Bridge in the City of Lincoln, and which shall not pass upon or through any Part of the said River Witham lying Eastward of the Place where the Old Stamp End Lock formerly stood, nor for any Goods, Wares, Merchandize or Commodities, carried or conveyed through or upon any part of the said River Witham above the said Place where the said Old Stamp End Lock formerly stood, through the High Bridge into Brayford Meer, nor shall any greater Toll or Duty be due or payable on the said Navigation upon Goods, Wares, Merchandise or Commodities imported from the Baltic immediately into the Port of Boston, and which shall pass from thence into the said River Witham, nor for any Flint, Stone, Pig-iron or Lime-stone, carried or conveyed on the said River Witham than the Proportion of Two-thirds of the Toll due and payable under the Authority of this Act.
For the purposes of this act, the commissioners are authorized to borrow, on security of the rates and tolls, the sum of £30,000 for drainage purposes; and a further suns of £70,000 on the credit of the navigation tolls.
In 1812 another act was obtained, entitled, 'An Act for rendering more effectual an Act of his present Majesty, for draining certain Low Lands lying on both sides of the River Witham, in the county of Lincoln; and for restoring the Navigation of the said River; and for repealing another Act of his present Majesty in relation to the said Drainage and Navigation.'
By which act the proprietors are incorporated as "The Company of Proprietors of the Witham Navigation," with powers to deepen, widen and embank the old course of the said river, from the Grand Sluice, in the borough of Boston, to a certain lock to be erected in a certain new cut to be made near Hasley Deeps, and to make a cut from the said Hasley Deeps, through Branston to The Woadhouses in Fiskerton, and from thence to the High Bridge in the city of Lincoln; the company are also authorized to build a new lock in the said new cut, and a weir in the east bank of the river at Bargate Drain, in the parish of St. Botolph, Lincoln; with various other works near the said place: for completing the purposes of the act, they are to raise £120,000, in shares of £100; and in case of deficiency, a further sum of £60,000, by creating new shares or by mortgage; they have also an acre-tax amounting to £1,400 per annum, granted on the lands, adjoining the Witham, becoming payable on the passing of the act; together with another acre-tax of the same amount, payable in proportion to the distance from time to time completed; they are also empowered to receive the following rates.
|For all Goods, Wares, Merchandize or Commodities, carried or conveyed from any Place within One Mile of Lincoln High Bridge, to within the like Distance of the Grand Sluice near to Boston, or from any Place within One Mile of the said Grand Sluice, to within the like Distance of Lincoln High Bridge||3s 0d per Ton.|
|And for any Distance upon the said Navigation, not exceeding Twelve Miles||1s 6d ditto.|
For any Goods carried or conveyed any greater Distance than Twelve Miles upon the said Navigation, and not being subject to the payment of the said Gross Tonnage of Three Shillings per Ton, nor to the payment of any Toll or Duty upon either of the said Navigations from the River Withain to Horncastle and Sleaford, One Penny Half-penny per Ton per Mile; provided the aggregate Toll or Duty, after the Rate aforesaid, shall not exceed the said Gross Tonnage of Three Shillings per Ton.
Goods, Wares or Merchandise liable to pay Toll on the Horncastle and Sleaford Canals, are subject to a Toll of Nine-pence per Ton if carried upon any Part of the Witham Navigation; and an additional Toll of One-half the Amount of Toll payable for navigating the River.
The next act obtained, was passed in 1826, under title of 'An Act for enabling the Company of Proprietors of the Witham Navigation to complete the Drainage and Navigation by the River Witham, and to raise a further Sum of Money for that Purpose.'
By this act the proprietors are empowered to raise an additional sun of £60,000 for the completion of the works, in shares of £100 each, or by mortgage of the tolls and rates. Debentures, bearing interest at £5 per cent. are also to be given to the proprietors of old shares, as security for the payment of arrears due to them. Several other clauses, chiefly reserving the rights of various persons and public bodies, as in former acts, are inserted in this, but are not necessary to he quoted here.
The last act relating to this useful navigation received the royal assent on the 4th June, 1829, and is entitled, 'An Act to authorize the raising a further Sum of Money for completing the Drainage and Navigation by the River Witham, and for amending the Acts relating thereto;' which, after reciting the works which the act of 52nd George III. empowered them to do, and what had been already executed, it states that the company of proprietors had, under authority of that act, contributed amongst them selves, in shares of £100 each, the sum of £156,800, and had raised by mortgage of the tolls and duties the further sum of £23,200, and which sums had been expended; and that by the act of 7th George IV. the proprietors had raised amongst themselves, in shares of £100 each, the sum of £52,100, and by mort-
gage £7,900, which sums have been also expended in carrying into execution time works authorized by the 52nd George III. but the navigation was yet imperfect; the proprietors were by the last recited act, authorized to raise a further sum of £50,000 on mortgage of the navigation, and a further sum of £20,000, if necessary.
The chief advantages derived from this navigation, are the facilities it affords of communicating with the rich agricultural district of the interior of the county of Lincoln, further augmented by the manner in which the Sleaford and Horncastle Navigation diverges from it. By the local position of this river and its connexion with the Trent, and the numerous canals which emanate from it by means of the Fossdike, an inland communication is established with all parts of the kingdom, and, of consequence, an additional degree of importance will necessarily attach to it.
31 Geo. III. C. 59, R. A. 10th June, 1791.
38 Geo. III. C. 31, R. A. 26th May, 1798.
44 Geo. III. C. 35, R. A. 23rd Mar. 1804.
48 Geo. III. C. 49, R. A. 27th May, 1808.
55 Geo. III. C. 66, R. A. 7th June, 1815.
THIS canal commences at the junction of the Birmingham and Birmingham and Fazeley Canals, at Farmer's Bridge, at the upper end of the town of Birmingham, and thence runs in a south-westerly direction to its junction with the Dudley Canal, at Selly Oak; thence it takes a south-easterly course to King's Norton, where the Stratford-upon-Avon Canal unites with it; and thence by a course nearly south-west the whole distance, and passing by West Heath, Oswald, Alvechurch, Tardebig, Stoke Prior, Hewell Park, Hadzor, Hanbury Park, Oddingley and Iplip Hall, and a short distance to the eastward of the towns of Droitwich and Bromsgrove, it joins the River Severn at Diglis, a little below Worcester.
It was made under the sanction of an act of parliament passed in 1791, and entitled, 'An Act for making and maintaining a navigable Canal from, or from near to, the town of Birmingham, in the county of Warwick, to communicate with the River Severn, near to the city of Worcester,' which incorporates a number of
persons therein named, who were subscribers to the undertaking, by the name of "The Company of Proprietors of the Worcester and Birmingham Canal Navigation," and empowers them to raise amongst themselves, for the execution of the work, the sum of £180,000, in eighteen hundred shares of £100 each, and if that should be insufficient, a further sum of £70,000, either amongst themselves or by mortgage of the tolls and rates, and authorizes them to take the following
|For all Coal, Iron, Iron-stone, Stone, Timber and other Goods and Things (except Lime and Lime-stone) carried on any Part of the Canal||2s 6d per Ton.|
|For the same Goods if carried any Distance less than Ten Miles from the Head of the Canal||0s 3d ditto, per Mile.|
|For all Lime and Lime-stone on any Part of the Canal||0s 10d ditto.|
|Except it be carried the First Ten Miles from the Head of the Canal||0s 1d ditto. ditto.|
|For all Coal, Iron, Ironstone, Stone, Timber and all other Goods and Things whatever, carried into or out of the River Severn, into or out of the Basin near Worcester||0s 1d ditto.|
For Goods remaining longer than Twenty four Hours on Wharfs, such Rates as the Parties may agree upon; and in case of Dispute, the Commissioners named under the Act to decide.
Materials for Roads and Manure for Grounds of Persons whose Land has been taken for the Canal, provided they do not pass any Lock except when the Water flows over the Waste Weir.
No Barge or other Vessel under Thirty-flve Tons to pass through any Lock without Leave of the Company or their Agent.
Lords of manors and owners of land on the line may erect wharfs and warehouses, and on their refusing to do so when required, the company may erect them.
The act restricts the company from making the canal nearer than 7 feet to the Birmingham and Birmingham and Fazeley Canals, without leave of the proprietors of those canals; and it also provides that the company shall, as compensation to the Droitwich Canal Company, in case they should sustain any diminution of profits from this work, make up the profits of that company to £5 per cent. on each share; the shares to be considered as of the value of £160, at which price the Worcester and Birmingham Canal Company are to purchase them, when thereto required by any of the proprietors. They are also to make up the dividends of the Stourbridge Canal Company £9 per share; and to make compensation to the Dudley Canal if their profits are
decreased. This last clause was repealed by the act of parliament for extending the Dudley Canal to this navigation. The company is also to pay £40 per annum to the Corporation of Worcester, in lieu of the water-bailiff's tolls.
By the Stratford-upon-Avon and Dudley Extension Acts, the proprietors of this canal are allowed the following
|For all Goods and other Things (except Coal and Coke) passing from Birmingham on any Part of this Canal, and along the Stratford Canal and the Cut, into the Warwick Canal||0s 1½d per Ton, per Mile.|
|For all Goods and other Things (except Lime and Lime-stone) passing out of the Stratford Canal, and from the Junction towards Worcester, upon the First Ten Miles from the Head of the Canal at Birmingham||0s 3d ditto. ditto.|
|For all Lime and Lime-stone passing out of the Stratford Canal, and from the Junction towards Worcester, upon the first Ten Miles from the Head of the Canal at Birmingham||0s 1d ditto. ditto.|
|For all Goods and other Things (except Lime and Lime-stone) passing out of the Stratford Canal, and from the Junction towards Worcester, upon any Part of the Canal, except the First Ten Miles from the Head of the Canal at Birmingham||2s 6d ditto.|
|For all Lime and Lime-stone passing out of the Stratford Canal, and from the Junction towards Worcester, upon, any Part of the Canal, except time first Ten Miles from the Head at Birmingham||0s 10d ditto.|
|For all Goods and other Things (except Lime and Lime-stone) passing from Birmingham to the Junction with the Stratford Canal, and from thence along the Stratford Canal towards Stratford, and from the Stratford Canal towards Birmingham||0s 1½d ditto. ditto.|
|For all Lime and Lime-stone passing as above||0s ½d ditto. ditto.|
|For all Coal and Coke upon any Part of the Worcester and Birmingham Canal, and along the Stratford Canal and Junction into the Warwick Canal||0s 5½d ditto.|
|For all Coals, Goods, Merchandize and other Things, which shall pass from the Dudley Extension Canal, and along the Worcester and Birmingham to or towards Birmingham||0s 2d ditto.|
|For all Coals, Goods, Merchandize and other Things, which shall pass from the Dudley Extension and along the Worcester and Birmingham Canal, to the Junction of the Stratford-upon-Avon Canal, and along the same to or towards the Town of Stratford only, the same Tonnage as though the same had passed from the Head of the Canal at Birmingham, reckoning as from Birmingham||0s 1½d ditto. ditto.|
For all Goods (except Coal and Coke) passing from the Dudley Extension, along the Worcester and Birmingham Canal towards Worcester, and not passing into the Stratford-upon~Avon Canal,the same Tonnage per Mile, according to the Distance the same passes on the Worcester and Birmingham Canal, as is payable for such Goods passing from the Town of Birmingham, and upon the same Part only of the said Canal.
Some of the rates allowed by the above acts are also mentioned in the Stratford-upon-Avon and Dudley Canal Articles; but as there are some omissions, the whole have been repeated here.
The next act of parliament relating to this navigation was passed in 1798, and is entitled, 'An Act for amending and enlarging the Powers of an Act passed in the Thirty-first Year of the Reign of his present Majesty,' and it empowers the company to raise the additional sum of £149,929, 1s. 1½d. either amongst themselves, by the creation of new shares, in number twelve hundred and fifty-nine, to be called half shares, and to be of the value of £69, 8s. 10½d. each, by granting annuities or by mortgage of the tolls and rates, and to take the following additional
|For all Coals, Iron, Iron-stone, Stone, Timber and other Goods and Things (except Lime and Lime-stone) upon any Part of the Canal, (except the first Fourteen Miles from Birmingham) the additional Sum of Three-pence per Ton per Mile, not exceeding in the whole||1s 0d.|
|For all Lime and Lime-stone upon any Part of the Canal, (except as above) the additional Sum of One Penny per Ton per Mile, not exceeding in the whole||0s 4d.|
And the additional Sum of One Penny per Ton to be taken on Goods and other Things carried to and from the River Severn, into or out of the Basin intended to be made in or near the City of Worcester, and not passing on any other Part of the said Canal; but nothing in this Act to affect the Rates granted to this Company by the Dudley and Stratford Canal Acts, except much Goods and Merchandize as shall pass from the Dudley Canal, and not pass from out of the Stratford Canal.
This was followed by an act which the company obtained in 1804, entitled, 'An Act for enabling the Company of Proprietors of the Worcester and Birmingham Canal Navigation to raise Money to discharge their Debts, and to complete the said Canal Navigation; and for amending the several Acts passed for making the said Canal Navigation,' which states that the company had not been able to raise the money authorized by the last act of parliament, and empowers them to raise the sum of £49,680 amongst themselves, by a contribution of £27, 12s. on each share.
In 1808 another act was obtained, entitled, 'An Act to amend and enlarge the Powers of the several Acts relating to the Worcester and Birmingham Canal Navigation,' which empowers the company to raise the further sum of £168,000, by the creation of four thousand two hundred new shares of £40 each, or by granting annuities or mortgage of the tolls and rates; and, if necessary, an additional sum of £40,000, by the creation of one thousand new shares of £40 each; and it repeals that part of the act of 1798 authorizing money to he raised by the creation of half shares.
The last act of parliamnent respecting this canal was passed in 1815, and is entitled, 'An Act for enabling the Company of Proprietors of time Worcester and Birmingham Canal Navigation to complete and extend their Works, and for better supplying the said Canal with Water; and also for vesting in Trustees for the said Company of Proprietors, his Majesty's Rights and Interest in certain Lands and Hereditaments in the parishes of King's Norton and Northfield, in the county of Worcester, forfeited to the Crown.'
After several clauses prescribing the mode of making reservoirs, &c. the act states that the company having purchased some lands for reservoirs, which they were not empowered by the acts of parliament to do, they had become forfeited to the Crown, but that his Majesty had remitted the forfeiture, and the act authorizes the company to re-sell such lands, provided, however, that if the debt of £27,096, 10s 4d. due from the company to their late treasurers, be not paid on or before the 29th day of September next after the passing of this act, the lands above-mentioned to be sold, and the above debt to be discharged from the proceeds.
The intention of making a basin at Lowesmore being abandoned, and one in lieu thereof being made at Diglis, that part of the former act which authorizes a tonnage rate of two-pence per ton on all barges or other vessels passing from the Severn into any basin belonging to the company, is repealed, but they are allowed to take the following additional
|For all Coal, lron, Iron-stone, Stone, Timber or other Goods or Things which shall be conveyed on this Canal from the River Severn to any Part of the Canal between Sidbury Bridge and Lowesmore Bridge, or from those Points to the Severn, and not passing any other Part of the Canal||6d per Ton.|
|For ditto from the Severn to the Basin to be made at Diglis, or any Part of the Canal between the Severn and Sidbury Bridge||4d ditto.|
The act also empowers the company to raise a further sum of £90,000, either amongst themselves, by the creation of two thousand two hundred and fifty additional simares of £40 each, or by granting annuities or mortgage of the tolls and rates.
The length of this canal is twenty-nine miles; its breadth at top 42 feet and depth of water 6 feet; and it passes through five
tunnels in its course. That at West Heath is two thousand seven hundred yards long, 18 feet high and 18½ feet wide within the arch, and the depth of water therein is 7½ feet; at Tardebig is another of five hundred yards in length; that at Shortwood is four hundred yards long; at Oddingley is one of a hundred and twenty yards; and at Edgbaston one a hundred and ten yards in length.
From the Birmingham Canal, the first fourteen miles is level; and in the remaining fifteen miles there is a fall of 428 feet by seventy-one locks, which are 15 feet wide and 81 feet long each, to the River Severn.
Where the summit pound of this canal connects with the Birmingham and the Dudley and Stratford Canals, stop-locks are erected, which the several companies may shut and lock up when the supplies of this or the other canals fail.
The Worcester and Birmingham Canal is the direct communication between the River Severn and the town of Birmingham, and by that means forms a connection with the Rivers Trent and Mersey, and all the great trading towns in the north of England; and by its junction with the Stratford-upon-Avon Canal, it communicates with all the principal towns in the eastern part of the kingdom; it is also the channel for supplying Worcester and the borders of the Severn down to Tewkesbury and Gloucester, with coal; and in return, conveys the hops and cider of that part of the country northward, and more particularly affords a ready means for the export of the Birmingham Manufactures, through the port of Bristol, to any part of the world.
(SEE BRIDGEWATER'S CANAL.)
31 George III. Cap. 77, Royal Assent 6th June, 1791.
40 George III. Cap. 55, Royal Assent 20th June, 1800.
THE first act for rendering navigable the Rivers Wreak and Eye, was obtained with a view to complete the commnunication between Leicester and Melton Mowbray, into the navigation from
which former place the present work opens in Turnwater Meadow. This act bears date in 1791, and is entitled, 'An Act for making navigable the Rivers Wreak and Eye, from the Junction of the said River Wreak with the Leicester Navigation at Turnwater Meadow, to Mill Close Homestead, in the parish of Melton Mowbray, in the county of Leicester.' By it the proprietors are incorporated, with the usual powers for making and maintaining the navigation, and for cutting new channels, &c. where required. For defraying expenses, they are empowered to raise £25,000 in shares of £100 each; and should this prove insufficient, they may raise a further sum of £5,000 by the creation of new shares or on mortgage of the rates, which are directed to be as under:
|For all Coal navigated from the Leicester Navigation to Eye Kettleby, Sysonby or Melton||2s 6d per Ton.|
|For ditto any shorter Distance||0s 2½d ditto, per Mile.|
|For all Iron, Timber, &c. navigated to ditto||4s 0d ditto.|
|For ditto any shorter Distance||0s 4d ditto. ditto.|
Dung, Materials for Roads, Lime and other Kinds of Manure are exempted from Rates and Tolls, under the same restrictions as the Leicester Navigation Act requires.
The company having proceeded in the execution of their plan, had occasion again to apply to parliament for authority to collect additional funds, and in consequence obtained a second act in 1800, under the title of 'An Act for enabling the Company of Proprietors of the Navigation, from Leicester to Melton Mowbray, in the county of Leicester, to complete their Navigation, and to discharge the Debts contracted by them in the making thereof, and for amending the Act passed in the Thirty-first Year of the Reign of his present Majesty, for making and maintaining the said Navigation.'
By this act it is recited, that in the progress of their undertaking, the commissioners have not only expended the two several sums of £25,000 and £5,000 which they were empowered to borrow, but also the whole of their receipts for tolls and duties since the opening of the said navigation, amounting to £7,000, and have contracted debts to the sum of £4,000, some part of their works still being incomplete; they are, therefore, empowered to raise the sum of £10,000 in shares or by mortgage of the rates, and to take the following tonnage rates.
|For all Coal navigated from the Leicester Navigation to Eye Kettleby, Syannby or Melton Mowbray, and not so far as the Fifth Lock on the Oakham Canal||1s 0d per Ton.|
|For all Coal navigated from the Leicester Navigation to the said Fifth Lock on the Oakham Canal||0s 6d ditto.|
|For ditto navigated upon any Part of the said Navigation, and not navigated so far as Eye Kettleby, Sysonby or Melton Mowbray||0s 1d ditto, per Mile.|
|For all Iron, Timber and other Goods, Wares and Merchandize (except as hereinafter is excepted) navigated from the Leicester Navigation to Eye Kettleby, Sysonby or Melton Mowbray and not carried so far as the maid Fifth Lock on the Oakham Canal||1s 6d ditto.|
|For ditto (except as hereinafter excepted) navigated from the Oakham Canal, Melton Mowbray, Sysonby or Eye Kettleby, to the Leicester Navigation||1s 6d ditto.|
|For ditto (except as hereinafter excepted) navigated more than Five Miles upon the said Navigation, and afterwards carried to the said Fifth Lock on the Oakham Canal||0s 9d ditto.|
|For ditto (except as hereinafter excepted) navigated upon any Part of the said Navigation, and not carried so far as from the Leicester Navigation to Eye Kettleby, Sysonby or Melton Mowbray, or not so far as from the Oakham Canal, Melton Mowbray, Sysonby or Rye Kettleby, to the Leicester Navigation||0s 1½d ditto. ditto.|
For all Lime, Lime-stone and Stones to be used for Building, and Materials for paving and repairing Roads, Half of the Rates, Tolls and Duties hereinbefore authorized to be taken an Coals.
No additional Tonnage Rates or Duties whatever shall be taken on any Goods, Wares or Merchandize, which shall pass from the Oakham Canal and shall be carried no further than the Public Basin at Melton Mowbray, nor on any Timber, Stone, Lime or other Material for the use of the Oakham Canal.
The length of this navigation, from its junction with the Leicester in Turnwater Meadow, to Melton, is eleven miles, in a north-west direction; the design of executing it is the same which induced the proprietors of the Leicester Navigation to undertake that work, and the benefits accruing to the various districts on the line of the work itself, and its communications, are of very considerable importance.
14 Char. II. C. 14, R. A. l9th May, 1662.
7 & 8 Wil. III. C. 14, R. A. 7th March, 1695.
13 Geo. I. C. 34, R. A. 15th May, 1727.
49 Geo. III. C. 78, R. A. 20th May, 1809.
THIS delightful river has, like the Severn, its source in the mountains of Plynlimmon, which are at an elevation of 2,463 feet above the level of the sea, and separate the counties of Cardigan
and Montgomery. Its course is in a south-eastwardly direction, west of the town of Rhayader, in the county of Radnor, from whence it becomes the boundary between that county and Brecknockshire; it thence passes by Builth to the town of Hay, situate on the borders of Herefordshire, and where the Wye first becomes navigable. Its course hence lies northwardly to Whitney Bridge, where it is crossed by the Hay Railway. Hence its course is very circuitous by Moccas to the city of Hereford; thence to near Mordiford, where the River Lugg, which is navigable for a short distance, falls into it. Its course hence is southwardly by Fownhope, the town of Ross, and Welsh Bicknor, where it enters Monmouthshire; hence it takes a south-westerly course by Lidbrook to Monmouth, where it is considerably augmented by the waters of the Munnow, and half a mile further by the River Trothy. Its course from Monmouth is directly south, and forming the division between Gloucester and Monmouthshire; passing Chepstow and its romantic castle, to the estuary of the Severn, into which it enters three miles south of the last-mentioned town, and eight miles north of King's Road, at the mouth of the Avon.
The navigable part of this river from Hay to the Severn is ninety-nine miles and a half, viz, from Hay to Hereford, thirty miles; from Hereford to the mouth of the River Lugg, seven miles and a half; from thence to the town of Ross, twenty-one miles and a half; from thence to Lidbrook, eight miles; thence to Monmouth, twelve miles; and thence to the Severn, twenty miles and a half.
Four several acts of parliament have been obtained relating to this river, the first of which was passed in the 14th Charles II. entitled, 'An Act for the making navigable the Rivers Wye and Lugg, and the Rivers and Brooks running into the same, in the counties of Hereford, Gloucester and Monmouth.' The second act was obtained in the 7th and 8th years of King William III. and entitled, 'An Act for making navigable the Rivers of Wye and Lugg, in the county of Hereford.' And in the 13th of George I. another act for amending the last recited act was passed, which is entitled, 'An Act for explaining and amending an Act passed in the Seventh and Eighth Years of the Reign of his late Majesty King William
'the Third, entitled, An Act for making navigable the Rivers Wye and Lugg, in the county of Hereford, and for making the same more effectual.' But as it appeared the powers vested in the trustees by these acts, were insufficient for carrying into execution the respective provisions, another act was applied for in 1809, and which received the royal assent on the 20th May, in that year; it is entitled, 'An Act for amending several Acts for making navigable the Rivers Wye and Lugg, in the county of Hereford, and for making a Horse Towing-Path on certain Parts of the Banks of the said River Wye.' By this act Sir George Cornewall and Sir John Geers Cotterell, Baronets, and thirty-one other gentlemen, together with the trustees appointed in pursuance of the above-recited acts, were incorporated by the name of "The Company of Proprietors of the Rivers Wye and Lugg Navigation and Horse Towing-Path," with power to contribute amongst themselves the sum of £6,000, in one hundred and twenty shares of £50 each, and a further sum of £3,000 if necessary. The act authorizes the company to make a horse towing-path between Hereford and Lidbrook, a distance of thirty-seven miles, and on which part of the river only, they are entitled to the following tolls.
|For every Horse or other Beast passing on any Part of the Path, and drawing any Vessel navigating the River||6d per Mile.|
|For any less Distance than a Mile||6d.|
Vessels haled by Men are free of Toll.
By reason of the Wye extending nearly one hundred miles into the interior of Wales, and through the rich agricultural districts of the county of Hereford, it is found exceedingly useful, from the facility it affords of shipping the extra produce to the more populous mineral districts of Glamorganshire, as well as Bristol and its neighbourhood. The navigation, however, of the lower part of this river is, during spring tides and when the wind blows fresh from the south-west, attended with no inconsiderable risk, as the tide, at its confluence with the Severn, sometimes reaches the extraordinary perpendicular elevation of 60 feet, which necessarily causes a tremendous and overpowering rush of water up the narrow channel of the Wye.
32 George III. Cap. 81, Royal Assent 30th April, 1792.
34 George III. Cap. 25, Royal Assent 28th March, 1794.
THIS canal, under authority of the first act of parliament passed respecting it, commenced at Wyrley Bank, in the county of Stafford; and from thence, running at first in a southerly course over Essington Wood and Snead Common, and thence south-easterly by Bloxwich, it proceeded to near Birch Hill, in the parish of Walsall; near Snead Common a cut was made from it, which taking a westerly course, and passing by Wednesfield, joined the Birmingham Canal near Wolverhampton. By the act obtained in 1794 for extending this canal, another cut was made, which, commencing at Birch Hill, took a northerly direction as far as Pelsall Wood, and from thence passing in an easterly course by Brown Hills, Cats Hill, a little to the south of Lichfield, and by Treford, it connects with the Coventry Canal near Huddlesford; there are also two branches; one from near Cats Hill to Hay Head Lime Works, and the other from near Pelsall Wood to Lords Hay; besides a small branch to a colliery on the south side of Essington Wood.
The act of 1792 is entitled, 'An Act for making and maintaining a navigable Canal from, or from near, Wyrley Bank, in the county of Stafford, to communicate with the Birmingham and Birmingham and Fazeley Canal, at or near thc town of Wolverhampton, in the said county; and also certain collateral Cuts therein described from the said intended Canal.' It incorporates the subscribers to the undertaking by the name of "The Company of Proprietors of the Wyrley and Essington Navigation," and empowers them to raise amongst themselves, for the purposes of the act, the sum of £25,000, in two hundred shares of £125 each, and, if necessary, a further sum of £20,000, either amongst themselves or by mortgage of the tolls and rates, and to take the following tonnage rates.
|For all Corn and other Grain, Hops, Timber and other Things, (except Coal, Coke, Iron, Iron-stone, Lime, Lime-stone, Rock-stone and other Minerals)||2d per Ton, per Mile.|
|For the above excepted Articles||9d ditto.|
Boats of less than Twenty Tons passing any Lock to pay for Twenty Tons.
No Vessels to pass to or from this canal into the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal, unless the Water in this Canal shall be at least Six Inches higher than that in the Birmingham and Fazeley, at the Junction of the Canals, and all surplus Water is to pass into the Birmingham Canal, the Proprietors of which may take the Water used in Lockage upon certain Parts of this Canal.
The proprietors of the Birmingham Canal may take, for all goods which are carried from this into their canal, the following
|For all Goods which shall be landed within One Mile of the First Lock leading towards Autherly||2d per Ton.|
|For ditto carried towards the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal, and which shall pass through any Lock||6d ditto.|
The act passed in 1794, entitled, 'An Act for extending the Wyrley and Essington Canal,' empowers the company to raise amongst theniselves, for the purpose of extending this canal as stated in the first part of this article, the sum of £75,000, and, if necessary, the further sum of £40,000, to be divided into shares of the same value as those in the first act, and authorizes their taking the following
|For all Coal, (except Slack or Coal used for burning Lime-stone or Bricks) Iron and other Minerals, and except such Coal as has passed on the Wyrley and Essington Canal. and has paid Nine-pence per Ton, and shall not pass through any Lock||0s 9d per Ton.|
|For such of the above Goods as shall have paid Nine-pence upon the Wyrley and Essington Canal or upon this Canal, and shall afterwards pass through the Lock at Cats Hill||1s 3d ditto.|
|For such of the above Goods as shall be produced from Ground situated below the Lock near Cats Hill, and shall be conveyed between Cats Hill and Huddlesford||2s 0d ditto.|
|For all Slack or inferior Coal for burning Lime-stone and Brick, Lime-stone and Lime, not passing a Lock||0s 6d ditto.|
|For such as shall have passed on the Wyrley and Essington Canal, and shall pass a Lock||0s 9d ditto.|
The act directs that the company shall purchase the shares of such proprietors as shall not be satisfied with the extension.
Mr. W. Pitt was the engineer employed on this canal, which is twenty-four miles in length from the Coventry Canal to its junction with the Birmingham Canal. In the first eight miles of
this distance to the reservoir at Cannock Heath is a rise of 270 feet, by thirty locks; and the remaining sixteen miles to the Birmingham Canal is level. In the first half mile of the Wyrley Branch, from its leaving the main line, is a rise of about 36 feet by six locks; and the remaining three miles is level. The branch to the Essington Colliery, which is about a mile in length, has a rise of about 24 feet by four locks. The branches - to Hay Head Lime Works, five miles and a half in length; to Lords Hay Coal Pits, two miles and a half; and to near Walsall, half a mile long, are all on the same level with the Long Pound.
This canal is of great service in conveying the produce of the mines which abound in its vicinity to the manufactories of Wolverhampton and its populous neighbourhood; and by its connection, through the Coventry Canal, with the Trent and Mersey Canal to the north and the Oxford Canal to the south, a communication is opened with the Rivers Treat and Mersey, and also with the River Thames.